With Real Salt Lake and Seattle Sounders preparing for a potentially playoff-altering match tonight, we take a look at some of the vitals prior to kickoff.
Real Salt Lake v. Seattle Sounders, 8 p.m. MDT (NBC Sports)
- RSL Soapbox: RSL, Seattle rivalry provides bright moments
- RSL Soapbox: Internationals prove a mixed bag for RSL
- RSL Soapbox: Strange bedfellows: Eddie Johnson to join Beckerman, Rimando on Seattle flight
- RSL Soapbox: Three questions ahead of Seattle
- Sounder at Heart: Scouting Report: Playoff Prep
- Sounder at Heart: Referee, injury and statistics
- Sounder at Heart: Beating Real Salt Lake is about seizing initiative
- RealSaltLake.com: Tactical preview, RSL at Seattle Sounders FC
- SBNation.com: MLS Playoffs: Sizing up the stretch runs
Projected (and official) lineup
Rimando; Beltran, Borchers, Olave, Wingert; Beckerman, Gil, Steele, Morales; Espindola, Paulo Jr.
Paulo out during warmups, Bonfigli in.
Javier Morales and Alvaro Saborio are both sitting on yellow card suspension warning, both having accrued four cautions through the season. A suspension would rule Morales or Saborio out for the final match of the season, a home match against Vancouver Whitecaps in a match that could be meaningful for playoff seeding - or could be the tipping point for the Canadian side's entrance into the playoffs at all.
Injury and absencesreport
Real Salt Lake | OUT: GK Lalo Fernandez (R wrist fracture); DOUBTFUL: DF Kwame Watson-Siriboe (R leg strain); QUESTIONABLE: MF Ned Grabavoy (R quad strain); PROBABLE: DF Chris Wingert (turf toe); DF Tony Beltran (R knee soreness) | International absences: Alvaro Saborio (CRC), Will Johnson (CAN)
Seattle Sounders FC | OUT: FW Babayele Sodade (R knee ACL tear); DF Andrew Duran (L ACL surgery); DOUBTFUL: DF Leo Gonzalez (R hamstring strain); DF Jhon Kennedy Hurtado (facial fracture) | International absences: Mario Martinez (HON), Adam Johansson (SWE), Eddie Johnson (USA)
Source: MLS Injury Report
- Alvaro Saborio's 17 goals have him set as the second-placed goalscorer in MLS. The odds of him beating Wondolowski are very, very long (the San Jose striker has scored 25, so Saborio would need at least eight goals in two games), but he does have a chance to put an even bigger stamp on his best-ever season at Real Salt Lake.
- A draw would give RSL a tie with its best season record (56 points in 2010, a 30 game season); a win would give them their best record with 58 points, but with a slightly lesser points-per-game metric. Two wins to end the season would give them their best-ever record in both regards: 61 points, 1.9 points per match.
- Already with 9 points from its last five matches, Real Salt Lake is at the level of its best regular season finish - even if it were to lose the final two matches. It won two points in the last five matches of 2011, nine points from the last five in 2010, six in 2009, six in 2008, seven in 2007, six in 2006, and one in 2005.